The term “farm-to-table” is typically referenced in terms of restaurants, yet we prefer to think of it under a new guise as we consider fall fashion. Modern shoppers are realizing the eco and economic benefits of buying high-quality items they’ll be able to wear a multitude of ways—AKA to the farm and the table. After all, why have a casual shoe that can only be worn for day and a different pair meant for dinner and drinks after the sun’s set?
To prove our theory, we connected with Frankie Ramirez, a florist and vintage clothing dealer who lives in Germantown, New York with her husband and two children. While she lives a very Instagram-friendly life, she’s also connected to the physical world in a way that’s shaped the lifestyle she’s created for her family.
“Being surrounded by nature in some way is incredibly important to me,” she explains. “I grew up on a lake in New England, but lived in cities for most of my adult life. Now that we’re upstate, I realize how grounded and supported I am by having a direct daily connection to nature. It’s incredible to have a view of the Catskill Mountains and space to grow my own flowers.”
Ramirez gave us a peek at her mountain life, showing areas she visits regularly for work and play (think the the local farm stand). She played dress-up too, styling beautiful fall clothes with Clarks boots, proving the same comfy shoe can transition effortlessly from fresh-cut stems to freshly poured wine.
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Coffee to Nightcap
There’s something no-fuss about a flat, lace-up boot that reads as rocker-cool. It never looks like it’s trying too hard, and the classic shape is one you’ll keep in your closet forever.
Ramirez wears it to afternoon coffee at Otto’s Market, an institution in the Hudson Valley hamlet. Its country aesthetic is complemented by a plaid maxi with flared cuffs and a leather camera bag that fakes the look of something unearthed at a rummage sale.
To segue into cocktail hour, it’s the outfit, not the shoes, that need changing. The same sandy-hued boots read just as well with a floral robe dress for drinks at Fish & Game. To ensure the look is elevated, skip nubby, thick socks in favor of a thin, silky trouser style. It adds a luxe tactile touch that instantly reads as more elegant.
Clark’s Hale Rise Boot, $150
Worn with: (top) Beaufille Dress, $895, net-a-porter.com; Hunting Season Bag, $680, lagarconne.com; Falke Socks, $24, neimanmarcus.com; Mary MacGill Tahitian Pearl Ring, $400, marymacgill.com; (bottom) Kamperett Hand-Painted Dress, $1,495, kamperett.com; Hunting Season Clutch, $895
Flowers to Dinner
For Ramirez’s job as a floral designer, her “office” often expands to include local flower fields. The close proximity to nature demands a certain flexibility in her wardrobe, including shoes that will put up with dirt and sand.
“My regular style is very feminine, but practical,” she says. “Things have to transition from working in the garden to carrying buckets of flowers to playing with the children to teaching classes on essential oils.” Ramirez has a penchant for neutral or floral-print dresses, and when it comes to shoes, will take a style she loves and run with it.
“I have a tendency to get into a uniform with shoes, finding something that’s comfortable and works with all my clothing. I lean toward simple flats, ankle boots, and, recently, clogs.”
Date night in the Catskills might mean visiting the local farmer’s stand (like Migliorelli’s, a family-run spot that’s been an area mainstay for decades) and bringing back fresh picks to cook at home. Casual by nature, it’s still an occasion to dress up. The black boots Ramirez wore to pick flowers earlier become the star when anchoring creamy separates in luxe fabrics.
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Clarks Clarkdale Arlo Boot, $160
Yard to Cocktail Hour
As any suburban dweller will tell you, the downside of a yard with trees and beautiful bursts of greenery is that all that space requires work. Outdoor-appropriate clothing doesn’t need to be dowdy or unflattering though; Ramirez’s typical uniform of loose, flowing dresses are comfortable to move in and stay true to her personal style. The same applies to footwear too. Practical boots can still have fashion-forward details, like bright wool insets that provide a pop of color.
With young ones at home, date nights are treasured, making the just-right outfit a key spot to play with fashion.
“We don’t have many night-out opportunities, as the children are very young still,” Ramirez explains. “When we do get out, I’ll pull out something a little more special, like antique lace, hand embroidery, or silk.” Once the perfect dress is in place, she’ll finish it with the accessory that made so much sense throughout her day. The same vividly accented mid-rise boots become an unexpected statement shoe when worn with an ultra-feminine, tiered dress.